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J Mol Biol. 1999 Nov 12;293(5):1221-39.

Effective use of sequence correlation and conservation in fold recognition.

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Protein Design Group, CNB-CSIC, Cantoblanco, Madrid, E-28049, Spain.


Protein families are a rich source of information; sequence conservation and sequence correlation are two of the main properties that can be derived from the analysis of multiple sequence alignments. Sequence conservation is related to the direct evolutionary pressure to retain the chemical characteristics of some positions in order to maintain a given function. Sequence correlation is attributed to the small sequence adjustments needed to maintain protein stability against constant mutational drift. Here, we showed that sequence conservation and correlation were each frequently informative enough to detect incorrectly folded proteins. Furthermore, combining conservation, correlation, and polarity, we achieved an almost perfect discrimination between native and incorrectly folded proteins. Thus, we made use of this information for threading by evaluating the models suggested by a threading method according to the degree of proximity of the corresponding correlated, conserved, and apolar residues. The results showed that the fold recognition capacity of a given threading approach could be improved almost fourfold by selecting the alignments that score best under the three different sequence-based approaches.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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